Laguna de Fuente de Piedra Nature Reserve

The Laguna de Fuente de Piedra Nature Reserve is one of the most important breeding grounds for the common flamingo (Phoenicoptus Rober Roseus) in the Iberian Peninsula. It is also a nesting and breeding site for other birds, which has made it one of the most important wetlands in Andalusia.

It covers an area of 1,486.59 hectares, and belongs to the endorheic group of lagoons in the Antequera area. The shape of the lagoon basin is elliptical, with dimensions of 2.5 km on its minor axis and 6.7 km on its major axis. Rainfall is the only water input to the system, divided between direct precipitation on the lagoon, surface runoff and groundwater. The only water leaving the lagoon is through evaporation, which determines its closed nature. On the surface, four streams of different sizes flow into the lagoon: the Charcón or Humilladero stream, the Arenales stream, the Mari Fernández stream and the most important, which rises at the foot of the Camorra de Mollina, the Santillán stream.

The largest colony of flamingos on the Iberian Peninsula

The largest in Andalusia

The Laguna de Fuente de Piedra is the largest lagoon in Andalusia and offers a privileged enclave for the reproduction of the pink flamingo, wintering and migratory passage of various birds. The lagoon is home to the largest colony of flamingos in the Iberian Peninsula and the second largest in Europe. 

It is a salty lagoon, and the evaporation of the water causes the salt to crystallise on the surface. The exploitation of this resource, which was abandoned around the 1950s, dates back to Roman times. The ancient dykes, walls and canals used for this purpose are today essential for the nesting of flamingos and other species of water birds.

The landscape of this area, of very gentle relief and covered with olive groves and cereal fields, is dominated by the enormous lagoon, in which the ecological interest due to the important colony of flamingos it shelters, is combined with the scenic beauty of its extensive sheet of water. Not even in dry years, when the level of the lagoon decreases, does the spectacular nature of the area disappear.

The Lagoon as a Nature Reserve

The Laguna de Fuente de Piedra was included among the wetlands of international importance by the Ramsar Convention in 1983, and years later, in 1988, it was declared a Special Protection Area for Birds (SPA).

In accordance with these circumstances, the Andalusian Parliament enacted Law 1/1984, of 9 January 1984 on the Declaration of the Laguna de Fuente de Piedra as an Integral Reserve, thus creating an appropriate legal framework to provide specific protection for the Laguna de Fuente de Piedra in accordance with its characteristics.

This law determines an area of intense and permanent protection; and a peripheral protection zone, in which actions and activities that are likely to have a negative impact on the reserve are limited. 

José Antonio Valverde Visitor Centre

In the Visitor Centre you can visit an exhibition about the natural area of the Laguna de Fuente de Piedra. Information panels explain the Reserve, its birdlife, flora and, in particular, the characteristics of the flamingos, information about their nesting sites, etc.

More info:
Tel: 952 73 54 53
Oficina de Turismo. Calle El Castillo, 1 
29520 Fuente de Piedra (Málaga)

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